Citing a ‘complete lack of confidence’ in the management of Western Wind's ability to execute a credible sale process, Savitr Capital, a Western Wind Energy shareholder, intends to nominate five new directors at an upcoming annual meeting of shareholders.
Savitr Capital, a substantial shareholder in Western Wind since 2008, has become increasingly dissatisfied with the company's performance and says it has lost confidence in Western's management and existing board of directors.
Among several claims, the group is concerned with the circumstances that led to the company's announcement that it was putting itself up for sale.
Savitr Capital also claims Western Wind has a failed strategic plan, poor financial leadership and an underperforming stock price.
‘The erratic press release of Sunday, July 29, 2012, announcing the sale of Western Wind, coupled with what appears to be its failed entrenchment strategy of issuing 13 percent of the issued and outstanding shares of the company in exchange for assets of questionable value, has driven Savitr to the conclusion that the current board and management team of Western Wind does not have the resolve, experience or credibility to initiate or conclude a sale process or any other plan to maximize shareholder value,’ says Andrew Midler, a director nominee and managing member of Savitr Capital.
Midler says Savitr's new board has considerable renewable energy, corporate governance and financial experience that will immediately focus on a full strategic review to maximize shareholder value through a credible sale process.
Among Savitr's proposed board members is George Smitherman, who most recently ran for mayor of Toronto after an 11-year career as a senior cabinet minister in Ontario.Â Most notably, as minister of energy and infrastructure, Smitherman led the passage of Ontario's Green Energy and Green Economy Act of 2009.
Other proposed board members are Rita Theil, a self-employed entrepreneur and lawyer; Bill Tharp, CEO and director of Climate Change Infrastructure, a private holding company; Winston Bennett, director of corporate finance at Javelin Partners; and Andrew Midler, a founder of Savitr Capital.
For its part, Western Wind issued its own statement in response to Savitr's Midler.
‘After the news release by Mr. Midler, we needed to take a closer look at the publicly disclosed track records of his slate of nominees,’ says Jeff Ciachurski, president and CEO of Western Wind.
After citing a 77% stock price decline of Reservoir Capital Corp., a company that proposed board member Bennett is a director, Ciarchuski says that Savitr's proposed board members have no publicly disclosed track record that can match the track record of Western Wind Energy's current board.